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April 27, 2000

April 27, 2000 -- Lockheed Martin has agreed to sell its Control Systems business unit to British Aerospace (BAE Systems) for $510 million, BAE announced today.

The unit designs, develops and produces digital engine controls for gas-turbine aircraft engines as well as digital fly-by-wire flight-control systems and other airborne electronic systems for U.S. aircraft like the F-18, the C-17, the V-22 and the A-10. During calendar year 1999, Control Systems had before-tax and interest profits of $42 million on sales of $395 million, the company said in a statement.

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April 27, 2000 -- National Security Agency Director Lt. Gen. Michael Hayden has nominated Deputy Director Barbara McNamara for the position of Special U.S. Liaison Officer, London, England, NSA announced today. InsideDefense.com reported McNamara's impending move on Feb. 15.

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April 26, 2000

April 26, 2000 -- The Russian Duma's decision to use ratification of the START II Treaty as a tool to force the United States to back away from the deployment of a limited National Missile Defense system is "unacceptable," Defense Secretary William Cohen told lawmakers today.

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April 25, 2000

April 25, 2000 -- A software glitch caused a Global Hawk unmanned aerial vehicle to accelerate and veer off the main runway following a test flight over Edwards AFB, CA, last December, an Air Force accident investigation board has concluded.

The UAV landed and came to a full stop when it suddenly accelerated to an "excessive taxi speed" and veered off the primary runway, collapsing its nose gear and damaging its sensor suite, the Air Force said yesterday in a statement announcing the release of the board's report.

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April 25, 2000 -- The initial configuration of the National Missile Defense system will cost nearly $30 billion to develop, build and operate through 2015 -- approximately $4 billion more than the Clinton administration has estimated, the Congressional Budget Office said in a study released today.

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April 25, 2000 -- The Pentagon comptroller has given the Army $220 million to tide the service over until Congress passes, and President Clinton signs, the fiscal year 2000 supplemental appropriations bill that will pay for the ongoing Kosovo peacekeeping operation, Army Secretary Louis Caldera told InsideDefense.com today. While the money will help offset Kosovo expenses, the service will have to start making some cutbacks to its operations if the supplemental is not passed soon, he said.

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April 26, 2000 -- The Pentagon is leaning toward procuring additional C-17 Globemaster cargo aircraft to make up for shortcomings in Air Mobility Command's ability to deliver oversize cargo, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Henry Shelton told lawmakers today.

"Right now, the intuition is that the C-17 would probably be the right answer," Shelton told the Senate Appropriations defense subcommittee.

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April 24, 2000

April 24, 2000 -- Alarmed by a rash of off-duty automobile accidents that have claimed the lives of 42 Marines since the beginning of fiscal year 2000, the assistant commandant of the Marine Corps has formed an executive safety board to examine how to raise safety awareness across the entire Marine Corps.

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April 24, 2000 -- The inaugural flight test of an experimental extended-range Joint Direct Attack Munition last week is being hailed as a success after an F-16 based at Eglin AFB, FL, launched the 2,000-pound bomb in an Air Force Research Laboratory proof-of-concept demonstration.

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April 21, 2000

April 21, 2000 -- One month ago Marine Corps Commandant Gen. James Jones ordered a two-day, service-wide standown to focus on retaining those Marines whose enlistment time was coming to a close. The results of that move, and other efforts to keep more Marines in uniform, are starting to pay dividends and Jones thinks the service has a good shot at meeting its goal of retaining 5,778 Marines through fiscal year 2000.

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April 21, 2000 -- The Pentagon has received a $210 million request from the United Kingdom for a possible sale of C-17A Globemaster support equipment. The potential foreign military sale was one of three worth a total of $290 million announced yesterday by the Defense Department.

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April 20, 2000

April 20, 2000 -- Bath Iron Works and Lockheed Martin, leaders on a team competing for the Navy's DD-21 destroyer program, announced today that IBM and Cisco Systems have joined them in their pursuit of the lucrative shipbuilding program.

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April 20, 2000 -- The head of Marine Corps aviation said today the V-22 that crashed in the Arizona desert April 8 had all major systems -- engines, drive shaft and propellers -- operating normally when it went down. Lt. Gen. Fred McCorkle told reporters in Washington that while investigators have not ruled out anything, "there is no evidence at this time to indicate mechanical failure or human error."

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April 19, 2000

April 19, 2000 -- In the wake of alleged thefts of classified documents from the State Department, the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence has launched a comprehensive investigation of the agency's security and counterintelligence programs, Committee Chairman Porter Goss (R-RL) announced yesterday.

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April 19, 2000 -- During the long, dark days of the Cold War, the Navy's P-3 antisubmarine aircraft logged thousands of hours patrolling the coastlines of the United States and its allies in search of Soviet submarines. Revamped to take on other missions since the end of the Cold War, the P-3 is now nearing the end of its service life and the outlook for replacing it is "bleak," two Navy under secretaries said at an industry conference yesterday.

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April 19, 2000 -- Twenty-five senior Senate Republicans have told President Bill Clinton the Senate will reject any ABM agreement the administration reaches with Russia if it trades Russian consent to a U.S. National Missile Defense system for U.S. "reaffirmation of a new, very limiting, legally binding accord." The April 17 letter foreshadows a fierce fight between Republicans and the administration over arms control and, more specifically, the administration's NMD plan.

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April 19, 2000 -- The Marine Corps recently completed the first high-speed water test of the Advanced Amphibious Assault Vehicle at NAS Patuxent River, MD. General Dynamics Land Systems, which builds the AAAV, declared the test a success in an April 17 statement.

"During the test on the Patuxent river," the statement reads, "AAAV prototype number one recorded speeds in excess of 20 knots over a one-mile distance. This test also marked the first attempt to power the AAAV at the full-up plane position it uses to ride on the water."

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April 18, 2000

April 18, 2000 -- Sometime in the late 1980s, the lines marking commercial and military technology development crossed, with the commercial sector taking the lead in many areas for the first time in history. The Navy is now feeling the effects of that event and is changing the way the it looks at developing major war fighting platforms like ships, submarines and aircraft, the service's top acquisition official told an industry conference today.

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April 17, 2000

April 17, 2000 -- The Navy has begun work on an environmental analysis of the western quarter of the Puerto Rican island of Vieques, site of a Navy training range, in preparation for turning the land over to Puerto Rico if the island's populace votes to close down the range. The referendum is part of a deal the Clinton administration struck with the Puerto Rican government following protests over the Navy's presence stemming from the accidental death of a range security guard.

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April 14, 2000

April 14, 2000 -- By 2005, half of all the Defense Department's contracts for support services ranging from health care to telecommunications are to be handled through performance-based agreements, according to a new directive from Pentagon acquisition chief Jacques Gansler.

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